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Friday, July 31, 2009

I Love Stillmotion

Stillmotion, I love you. You bring tears to my eyes when I see your amazing work. I wish I could afford you on my wedding day so that you can tell our story through your lenses. I cried like a baby after watching this video of Carolyn and Raj's wedding. I even watched it twice (the second time with the split screen of the couple's reaction), and I cried even more.

raj + carolyn // same day edit . TN from stillmotion on Vimeo.

raj + carolyn // the split screen sde reaction from stillmotion on Vimeo.

via Weddingbee Pro

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Dreamy Hello Lucky Invitations

In the beginning of wedding planning I only knew invitations to look like this:

{very traditional invites}

Both of my sisters chose the same style with only slight differences in wording (as in replace one couple's name with the other). While boring, I thought this was what everyone did for their invitations. How do you stand out from all the other weddings? It's all about the details. My one sister in particular was very picky about the fonts, border, color, and every little detail you can possibly find in traditional invitations (which doesn't look like much).

Then I stepped into the online world of wedding planning, which totally opened my eyes up to creative DIY invites (people actually make their own.. wow) and something called letterpress. At first I just thought letterpress stood for pure awesome invites that attracted the eye with stunning colors and textures. It was nothing like those invitations of my past. I was immediately drawn.

Blue Dahlia Bridal Shower Invites from ilee papergoods

What is letterpress exactly? Here's the break down via my trusty Wikipedia source:
  • relief printing of text and image using a press with a "type-high bed" printing press and movable type, in which a reversed, raised surface is inked and then pressed into a sheet of paper to obtain a positive right-reading image
  • normal form of printing text in the West from its invention by Johannes Gutenberg in the mid-15th century until the 19th century, and remained in wide use for books and other uses until the second half of the 20th century
  • small amount of high-quality art and hobby letterpress printing remains
  • fine letterpress work is crisper than offset litho because of its impression into the paper, giving greater visual definition to the type and artwork
  • many of these small letterpress shops survive by printing fine editions of books or by printing upscale invitations and stationery, often using presses that require the press operator to feed paper one sheet at a time by hand
  • most letterpress equipment prints only one color at a time
  • classic feel and finish of letterpress papers takes printing back to an era of quality and craftsmanship that is not often found in other printing methods today
  • recently undergone a revival in the USA, Canada and the UK, under the general banner of the 'Small Press Movement'
Take a look at the letterpress making process with Pistachio Press on Etsy

I clicked on a few links and soon realized that letterpress would never ever be in my budget =(. At around $25 per invite for the premium stuff, it costs more than I'm willing to spend on a single piece of clothing. It costs more than a dinner for two. My letterpress dreams were crushed. I did find that there were other options for around $10 an invitation, but that is still way too much. I can't even afford to buy a letterpress wedding invitation sample. They run for $5-$10 a pop.. ouch. I just have to admire the pretty invites from the computer screen and try to refrain myself from drooling all over my keyboard. Or do I?

Fast forward a couple months, and I ran into this contest on the Weddingbee boards for a Hello Lucky letterpress/digital invitation samples giveaway. Hello Lucky is pretty much the letterpress gods, and their invites can go for a pretty penny (try 2500 of them for each invite). Even though my chances of winning are always slim, I took my chances and entered.

how dreamy... swooon

With 59 people entering, I didn't have much of a chance at winning (well 1 in 59). The prize went to someone else, and I forgot about the contest. I went back to the motherland for a while, and I came home to a normal life. With little to no wedding planning happening in those 5 weeks I was gone, it took me a while to get back into the swing of things. One evening while checking my email on my phone, I came across a message from Weddingbee. Later I checked the email from the computer and saw this:

Was I dreaming? Did Bee, the creator of Weddingbee, really contact me?? I freaked out a bit, did a little dance, and had the biggest smile on my face. Of course I replied right away with all of my information, and I patiently waited for the best package to arrive a few days later.

OMG!! a package from the most famous bee of all, THE BEE!! I love the cute Weddingbee sticker!

I carefully opened the package to discover the yummy Hello Lucky letterpress invitation samples... swoooooon! Do you see my little extra bonus on the left?

I even took a little photo session with my precious letterpress samples. Surprisingly, these photos were all done by me using Hubby's camera.

These samples were such a delight, and I had so much fun touching every one of them. There were also digital invitations from Hello Lucky, which was recently introduced earlier this year. It gives the buyer the option to get the beautiful letterpress designs for a fraction of the cost with digital printing. The invites have definitely provided me with a lot of inspiration. The coordinating response cards and envelopes are dreamy, and I cannot stop looking at them.

Thank you, Bee, for making this girl's letterpress wish come true. Now I just need to enter into every contest offering free letterpress invitations. Hehe.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

THE Wedding Rehearsal Dress

This past weekend Hubby and I celebrated our anniversary with an adventurous trip to the beach. It's pretty much tradition for us to make it down there once a year in the summer to take advantage of the sun and nice beachy breeze. We made a pit stop at the Tanger Outlets in Rehobeth to wait for the traffic to die down. While walking past BCBG, I saw this beauty in the window...

BCBG Maxaria Strapless Appliqué Dress - $398 at Nordstroms

In the wedding world this dress is super famous for being THE perfect rehearsal dress. Just look at it.. it pretty much screams awesomeness. This is so in demand, and you would have to be a crazy Weddingbee stalker to understand how amazing it was that I even found it in the first place.

Being the crazy obsessive bride to be, I had to try it on. There were three dresses on the rack, and they all happen to be a size zero. I really hoped it would fit. Even though I'm small, I'm not that small... or am I?

It fit like a glove. I'm not sure exactly how I was able to fit into a size zero, especially gaining all the weight back that I had lost from my trip to China. Yes, the dress actually does look as pretty in real life as it does in photos you've seen online.

Here I am trying to see whether it looks good on me. I love the rouching up on top, and I might just have to incorporate that into my dream wedding dress. It makes me feel comfortable and confident. Even my small boobies look good in this dress. Brownie points!!

Can you tell that I spent a lot of time looking at the mirror? Well I had nothing else better to do while Hubby was talking on the phone. He was thoughtful enough to snap the photos of the dress, even while talking.

I even look good from the side.. impressive! Actually I just look stick thin. Don't be fooled folks. I don't actually look like that in real life. It was just the angle at which the picture was taken.

This is the only decent photo of myself looking at the camera. I looked like one hot mess trying on the dress with my bikini top underneath (tucking the straps into the boobage area) and wearing flip flops. I had to crop these photos to disguise the ugliness of my footwear with this dress.

With an original price of $398 online, can you guess how much it was going for at the outlet? Does $199 sound pretty decent at half off? Well let's try a mere $89 for the most in demand wedding rehearsal dress out there! That's 77% off the original price!! Now here's the kicker.. I didn't purchase the dress. Even for that ridiculously cheap price, I left it back on the rack and walked away. You must think I'm crazy. Actually I do think that I was crazy now that I think back on it. It fit me like a glove. It made me look good (and skinny too)! Even if I decided that it wasn't for me, I would have no problem selling it online to another bride and actually be able to make a profit.

I walked away because it wasn't in the budget. There are other priorities in life, and even for a bargain steal of $89, I couldn't justify the cost at the time. Examining the dress, I felt that the materials used felt kind of cheap for a BCBG dress. Don't get me wrong. The material worked very well on my body, and it hugged all the right parts. It just didn't feel like high quality. The flowers were a bit messy and frayed at the ends, which is expected for the technique they used to get the flowers to look the way they did. In the end it just wasn't for me. I might regret this one day in the future (today might be that day), but at least I got the experience to try on the most in demand dress out there today.

By the way, I'm not the only one who walked away from the dress. Mrs. Quiche was not satisfied with her purchase and returned it back to the store.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Inspiration Board!

I made my very first inspiration board today, and I am a tad proud of myself. Lately I have been drawn to pretty shades of pink, and these photos might just convince me that pink is the perfect wedding color for us. Now it's time to convince Hubby...

from left to right:

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Happy Anniversary!!

Dear Hubby,

Can you believe it's been 4 years since we first met and fell in love? That sure does sound like a heck of a long time, but it's just a small dent in the lifetime we'll spend together. You are my best friend, my fiance, my soul mate, and my everything! I cannot wait to see what the future has in store for us. I love you. Happy anniversary!


{Let's take a look back down memory lane...}

{me being shy}

{hubby being relaxed}

{at morimoto's - just friends}

{we're officially together}

{at my sister's wedding - august 2005}

{spring 2009}

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Esty: Vintage Wedding

1950's Vintage Ivory White Paris Haute Couture Heavily Pleated Lace Applique Silk-Chiffon Princess Circle-Skirt Wedding Party Dress from Timeless Vixen - $480

Vintage 1950s Ivory Tulle Lace Tiered Princess Wedding Dress from Calendar Girl Clothing - $410

1940s Vintage Wedding Dress Ball Gown from Kona Riley Vintage - $750

1950's Vintage Strapless Shelf-Bust Ruffle Baby Pink Princess Chiffon and Lace Couture Rockability Wedding Party Prom Dress from Timeless Vixen - $330

Vintage Cream Lace Skirt from Remains of the Day - $15

Vintage Simplicity Wedding Dress or Bridesmaid Dress from Cjb Second Time Around - $4.99

Rolled Rose & Vintage Lace Fantasy Headband from Be Something New on Etsy - $50

Vintage Brooch Silver Bow Headband from Croska on Etsy - $58

Vintage Rose Pin and White Hair Barrette from Bree's Vintage Revivals - $5

Art Deco Filigree Bracelet with Rhinestones Circa 1920 from Nouveau Motley - $85

Art Deco 5 Strand White Milk Glass Necklace from Art Deco Dazey - $19.99

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Wedding Questions

It feels odd to talk about weddings, even a year after being engaged. Maybe it's because I haven't really started planning quite yet. The other day I was asked about details of my wedding, and I gave a few short responses. I felt like I should have given solid responses with a strong and clear vision of what I want for my wedding day. It's been a year after all, and I should be much further in my planning process. At the very least I should know what I want. I should have an idea of what colors and theme I want, but I end up flip flopping pretty much every week.

I remember when I was first engaged it was easy to battle through those questions. I would simply answer the oh so popular "have you set the date yet?" question with a simple no. It was early enough that I didn't need to give anyone a date. I was also still in college, and I don't think people expected me to start planning in the midst of my last semester. Sometimes I would answer the question with an answer of "summer 2012" to get them to stop asking. I feel more guilty now if I can't give them the right answer. Saying next summer is a good enough question for most people right now, and I am relieved.

Unfortunately as the months pass by answering those questions don't get any easier. I wish it did. I think a small part of me sinks in deeper each time people ask about the wedding because deep down inside I'm not sure if it will happen as soon as everyone expects. I feel like I disappoint them when I tell them that I have no details planned. Sometimes I feel like they're judging me for not knowing what I'm doing. Of course they have no idea that I helped with 2 of my sisters' weddings and have been religiously reading Weddingbee everyday since I got engaged. I've had concerns from others about booking the reception site (aka the 10 course Chinese/Viet dinner). My FMIL is worried that I will inconvenience guests who will need to make traveling arrangements and take time off of work by not setting a date yet. It only gets more difficult as the time between now and next summer starts to dwindle.

I must know a thing or two about weddings.. evidence provided in the above photo

Friday, July 17, 2009

Etsy Love

I am a huge fan of Etsy, and I thank Weddingbee for introducing me to this amazing site. What is Etsy?

"Our mission is to enable people to make a living making things, and to reconnect makers with buyers. Our vision is to build a new economy and present a better choice: Buy, Sell, and Live Handmade."
Briefly browsing through some amazing finds today...

Vintage Cottage Ribbon Rose Wreath, Soft Blues from Frippelous - $44

Flower Bridal Cuff/Wrist Corsage in Duck Egg Blue from Alicia Wedding Accessories - $30

English Rose Ruffle Top from Lirola's Designs - $74

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Ultimate Photo Booth Background

Remember this post about my love for photo booths and having some fun? Well this is the ultimate photo booth background. It takes a lot of creative juices to create and execute this amazing background.

Background created by Sasha Souza for Kristen's Wedding
Found on Kiss the Groom via Pengy's Tweet

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Wedding Planning? Not So Much...

I have been engaged for over a year, and there is a possibility of a wedding happening next summer. Most brides to be would be well into planning their dream wedding. I just don't fit into the category of most brides. In times when the economy is falling apart, it is difficult for any couple to plan a wedding. It's even more difficult when only one is working. There is a limited budget, and it gets even smaller when purchasing a house is entered into the equation. What is one to do?

I play the waiting game. I am waiting for some sort of miracle to happen and put all of my problems aside. I don't want to start planning a wedding until I have a steady job. In order to have a steady job, I would need to actually go ahead and look for one. Take a look at for more details about my unemployment situation (the sadness, the breakdown, the complete lost of hope, etc). I need to find a path for myself before I can start dreaming of the fairytale wedding. Sigh.

How do couples in graduate, medical, and law school do it? Some of them have part time and even full time jobs while going back to school. Others focus on their studies with a lot of time spent in rotations and such. Not only do they run into the problem of money, but they are also busy with their commitment to school. I really do look up to people who can focus on school and planning a wedding.

Then it gets me thinking. Do most people have help from their parents? For most American weddings I see that more and more couples are paying for it on their own. Parents are still chipping in to help for the costs, but more couples are becoming less dependent on their parent's financial help. That's great. I want to be one of those couples too. I would love to plan the wedding without worrying about the costs that would incur to our parents. It would give us the flexibility to plan within our needs and also splurge on things that we would consider necessary. Will our parents contribute? As mentioned before, mine will not. Hubby's parents will most likely help us out, but is that a good thing? I can already imagine his mom planning our wedding for us, cutting cost where she thinks is necessary. Here is one conversation we had...

FMIL: Do you remember the wedding in France that we went to? I asked the bride how much her dress cost. Can you believe she paid $2,000??

Me: Oh. Yeah wedding dresses are very expensive.

(FMIL has the look on her face hoping that I would not dare to purchase a dress that expensive)

FMIL: Hopefully you can find a cheap dress that looks good. Shop around. Find a good sale.

Me: Okay...

At that time I already had a wedding dress in the closet. It's my very old, vintage dress I bought at Goodwill in Pennsauken, New Jersey for a mere $24.99. I'm sure no one was impressed by the dress. It's not really "me," but it is gorgeous and totally vintage. I think FMIL was hoping that I would find a different dress. In this example, I would feel extremely guilty ever spending more than a few hundred dollars for my dream wedding dress. FMIL and pretty much anyone who knows the cost of a very expensive dress would look down upon me. That wouldn't be such a great feeling. In this situation if we had full reign of the finances to pay for our own wedding, then the price of the dress would not be an issue. I would purchase it (whether it be very cheap at $24.99 or somewhat expensive near the $1k mark), and not feel guilty as long as I have Hubby's approval. He knows that I am a reasonable person, and therefore it would not be an issue.

Pulling this back to my original point.. it's a bummer not to have much financial control over the wedding right now. We have no money saved up for this wedding (it's all going towards the house), but somehow we'll make it work. I have confidence that we can pull this together. There will be tons of DIY projects in the future, and I just have to keep my head up high. My vision is coming together slowly, and I just have to make this wedding planning process work for us. *fingers crossed*

Ultimate squishee couple ready for marriage!
Just needs the planning process to work out for them...

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

*Moustache/Mustache Love

I have always been a fan of photo booths, and incorporating it in a wedding makes total sense to me. Unfortunately it does cost a pretty penny, but that doesn't stop me from looking at different props for funny photo opportunities! I've been seeing moustaches making a big and funny appearance at weddings, and I am lovin' it!

Featured on Wedding Chicks
Photography by Sarah Bussey Photography

Scott and Staci's Wedding Seen on Weddingbee
Mustaches on a Stick by Something's Hiding in Here on Etsy
Photography by Carl Zoch Photography

DIY Moustache on a Stick from Twig & Thistle via Craft
Check out the template and make your own!

Miss Powderpuff's Mustached Shenanigans on Weddingbee
She used a template from Martha & it looks great!

*While researching for this post and also finding moustache goodness of my own, I ran into a spelling problem. I found out that it can be spelled both ways (moustache and mustache). My way of spelling moustache is the British way. Wikipedia, thanks for always keeping me informed!